In an undercover investigation video about the education reform known as Common Core, a senior Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt sales executive laughs that she “hates kids,” and that textbook manufacturers are concerned about their profits, not the educational needs of children.
James O’Keefe, president and founder of Project Veritas, has his journalists visiting America’s top textbook publishing companies – “the moneymakers of Common Core” – to expose the crony capitalism that is attempting to take over America’s education system.
In the video, Dianne Barrow, the West Coast Accounts Manager for Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt states, “You don’t think that the educational publishing companies are in it for education do you? No. They’re in it for the money. The fact that they have to align the educational standards is what they have to do to sell the books.”
The project’s journalists also interview Jodi Cohen, a Brooklyn, New York teacher, who says about Common Core, “It’s bulls**t and the thing is, what they do is they create some new f**king system, that f**king sucks to sell more books and then we have to learn something new with the students.”
“Our video exposes how the book publishers are all about the money with no regard for the actual needs of our children,” O’Keefe states. “Corporate cronyism and underhanded political deals have contributed to Common Core’s massive disruption and the unraveling of America’s educational fabric.”
O’Keefe – who also produced undercover videos exposing ACORN and Obamaphone cheaters – said his group will continue to expose “how taxpayer dollars are used with little accountability to enrich the major book publishing companies.”
The Common Core standards – initially adopted by 46 states – is a federally promoted education initiative introduced in the Obama administration’s 2009 stimulus bill through a competitive grant program called Race to the Top (RTTT). States could apply and compete for federal grant money as long as they adopted a set of uniform standards and aligned curricula and testing, the criteria for which could only be met by Common Core.
The National Governors Association (NGA), the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), and nonprofit progressive education think tank Achieve, Inc. were mainly responsible for the initiative, and both the NGA and the CCSSO are the publishers of the Common Core State Standards.
The state boards of education, many of them unelected, that signed onto the unproven Common Core standards did so with little, if any, public or media scrutiny, prior to even seeing the standards themselves.
The implementation of Common Core has been privately funded primarily by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, underscoring the alliance of big government political elites and corporatists in this academic initiative.
The two multi-state test consortia funded by the U.S. Department of Education – Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) – that have developed assessments based on the Common Core standards have dwindled significantly in their membership as more information about the reform has been made public.